Rob Burman

A Life Working with Clay and Creating Great Characters, Influenced by a Two Generation Legacy in Hollywood Effects

About Rob

For 40 years Rob Burman has been “playing” with clay.

In fact it started when he was a young boy and his father handed him the soft and yielding material to keep the boy occupied while the senior Burman created some of Hollywood’s more extraordinary Make-up and Effects; “The Planet of the Apes“, “Lost In Space”, “Invasion of the Body Snatchers”. A true pioneer in the film industry.

Rob, himself, began working right along side his “old man” fresh out of high school. His new-found career took off and he never looked back; “The Thing”, “Ghostbusters”, “The Fly” – Rob was involved in them all. His love of the craft is apparent in his sculpted designs, which are viewed by millions of people all over the world in nearly 300 films and television shows.

While immersed in his career, Rob began discovering the wondrous talent of his grandfather, Ellis Burman. During the Great Depression, Ellis was a sculptor in Nebraska and created monuments and museum pieces such as: “Smoke Signals” (an 18’ tall, 26 ton cement sculpture), war memorials, and busts of numerous politicians of his day, including Eleanor Roosevelt.

When Ellis finally headed west for Hollywood, he became involved in classic movies like 1941's “The Wolfman”, (sculpting the silver-headed cane that causes the lead monster’s demise and saves the day), “Abbot and Costello Meet Frankenstein” and even TV’s “The Munsters”.

Rob, as a third generation artist, was hooked. His passion for creating in clay was gnawing away at him. He had sculpted literally hundreds of pieces throughout his career, from masks to monsters, from the cartoon to the ultra-realistic. But now his creative desires were overflowing. What would his personal inspiration be?

Then he discovered Leonardo. After years of turning two-dimensional designs into three-dimensional reality, a series of Da Vinci’s tiny thumbnail sketches known as “The Grotesques” created in Rob the desire to see them transformed in kind – To find out just who these people were. The inspiration was found.

From there, Rob expanded into other artistic endeavors. His life-like figures of the Signature Series have amazed and entertained people from all around the world. The one of a kind stylings of his “Uniquities” series are both fantastic, yet somehow undefinable, tell intimate and imaginitive stories.

The subject matter of Rob’s mind is rich and deep. There are enough individual ideas to fill a lifetime’s worth of sculptural achievement. Each creation has its own personality and all fill the mind with wonder.

When asked what piece he will do next, Rob replies, “What would you like?”